When Coopers Brewery - Australia's third largest brewer – installed an entirely new brew house in 2001, international brew house designers Briggs of Burton proposed linking all measuring points with PROFIBUS. Today, this brew house remains one of Australia's most modern brewing facilities using both PROFIBUS DP to link the PLCs and SCADA, PROFIBUS PA for level, temperature, flow, pressure transmitters and valves and AS-i for digital I/O.
According to David Medlyn, Senior Process Control Engineer, with PROFIBUS process managers are now obtaining immediate and more accurate feedback on every measured parameter and measuring point at all process stages.
How did PROFIBUS effect these improvements?
Brew houses are typically harsh environments whose high temperatures, aggressive processes and caustic cleaning materials can be hazardous for workers and machinery and damaging to cabling. By radically reducing the amount of cabling needed and enabling process instruments to be added quickly and easily into the network, PROFIBUS significantly reduces the potential for cable damage and the time, costs and dangers associated with maintenance.
Furthermore, PROFIBUS enables ‘plug and play' commissioning. The programmer simply obtains the relevant GSD file, adds the new node onto the segment and, with an update to the control logic, it's 'ready to go'. Medlyn is particularly impressed by the robust performance of PROFIBUS PA, and the simplicity and convenience of its troubleshooting capabilities. When an instrument is damaged, the PROFIBUS network does not fail and the source of the problem is instantly identifiable from the control room. Process managers can also proactively prevent instrument failure by detecting incipient problems where attention is required.
Having experienced the benefits of using PROFIBUS PA and seen the resultant increase in product quality, Coopers has continued to introduce PROFIBUS PA throughout the plant as it expands to meet growing market demand. “We find that the 4-20 mA loops in our plant require more calibration work and are not as reliable or as accurate compared with those on the PROFIBUS network,” concludes Medlyn. The Coopers team has deployed ProfiTrace as its predictive maintenance tool. This enables technicians to check and troubleshoot the entire PROFIBUS network and thus plays a significant role in plant asset management.
Thanks to its PROFIBUS DP and PA network throughout the plant, Coopers brewery continues to be one of Autralia´s most modern brewing facilities; thus it meets the growing market demands.